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Virtual Assistant Pastor


Spring 1918, Bedford, PA

This picture is courtesy of my parents; apparently, our family farm had sheep on it.  They date this photo around Spring of 1918.  In the years that follow, at some point, the Pennsylvania turnpike purchased our farm by eminent domain for America's First Superhighway.


Theology of a Virtual Assistant Pastor

Obviously, computers don't study God.  So, what's this theology of a virtual assistant pastor all about?

I love the analogy of a shepherd for Jesus.  We are his sheep.  Then, if Jesus is the shepherd, the pastor is the "under shepherd" (unter schäfer in German).  My draw to this analogy may be due to my deciding to be a pastor, especially since my last name is Shaffer (from schäfer). I plan to serve God however he leads, and this website is intended to collaborate on projects with other pastors and laity—with other sheep—beyond the walls of my station in life!

This website can serve as a virtual platform for those projects.  In that way, you can think of my website as your Virtual Assistant Pastor!

How can benefit others?

That's the $1M question.  The whole premise behind this website is collaboration, so let me know if you'd like to share resources and promote ministry tools by contacting me at

Why an ASSISTANT pastor?

Think of a virtual assistant pastor as a one-on-one engagement.  Whether you're a sole pastor or a senior pastor, your time is limited.  The idea of an assistant pastor might sound great, but how do you know if you're getting what you want?  Customize the experience!  If you've never been an assistant coach, you've missed out on a fun experience.  Don't get me wrong, being the head coach lets you make most of the decisions, but being the assistant coach means that you get to do more of the one-on-one work.  I've been the head coach of a high school girls' volleyball team (2023), of girls' club volleyball teams, and of the 2010 Women's All-Army Volleyball Team (for competition against the other branches of Military service).  But, I've also been an assistant coach in many of the girls' volleyball programs, including the 2010 Women's All-Armed Forces Volleyball Team (for competition at the international level).  Think of my website as a customizable assistant pastor.

Conveniently, I have a Call to be a pastor, so I am a pastor.  More importantly (perhaps for you) is that this virtual Assistant Pastor could NEVER replace you.  People need people, not computers, but computers can help increase communication to our sheep when we collaborate for efficiency!  After all, sheep love computers!  Well, maybe not all of them love computers, but those who are able to make good use of computers will be able to benefit greatly from you having a virtual Assistant Pastor.

This website is a collection of my personal interests and projects to empower ministry.  I decided to create my own website as a way of separating my own interests from that of my church and school, as a way of communicating those interests apart from any specific ministry context.  As such, this site is all me … and only me ... in virtual form.  I am not saying that anything on this website should be a priority for my church or school, just like I wouldn't say that anything on this website should be a priority for you and your religious organizations.  What I can do is speak for my own personal interests and for the ways in which I perceive God moving my heart.  God may send me to a congregation that doesn't need or have use for some (or all) of these interests, and that’s fine, but perhaps this site can then serve as a point of reflection for others.  It may also serve as a way of getting to know me better.  Lastly (and mainly), this site will serve as a platform for my independent projects ... such as my Greek Study Aid.

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